LOS ANGELES – The sun has gone down on Elton John’s final North American show in the place where it all began: Dodger Stadium.
“Tonight is a very special night, a very emotional night for me,” said John, wearing a bedazzled jacket with tails and sunglasses, after playing “Philadelphia Freedom” on a grand piano. “It’s been a long journey.”
John, 75, closed out his Farewell Yellow Brick Road tour in North America on Sunday, a goodbye made even more poignant since Dodger Stadium was the famed setting for John’s 1975 breakout stadium concerts.
More than 47 years ago, John’s two electrifying, sequin-outfit-filled concerts at the historic baseball stadium affirmed the rising star’s supernova status.
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“Elton John Live: Farewell From Dodger Stadium” was livestreamed on Disney+.
“We are making history tonight, the first-ever global stream on Disney+,” John said. “And hello Dodger Stadium!”
Still recovering from a hip injury that forced the tour’s postponement in September 2021, John did not move across the stage with ease, much less jump atop his piano as he did in 1975.
But his piano-pounding numbers haven’t lost a step as he showed with an extended riff at the end of “Levon.” After finishing the song, John slumped over the piano in (possibly) exaggerated exhaustion, only to jump back to his feet to urge more applause.
The departing superstar had help from musical guests. Brandi Carlile sang the George Michael role alongside John for “Don’t Let the Sun Go Down on Me.” Holding a gold microphone, Carlile never lost her giddy expression. British singer Kiki Dee, joined John to sing their classic duet “Don’t Go Breaking My Heart,” nearly five decades after the two performed the same number.
“We decide to reenact that incredible moment,” John said.
Dua Lipa and John sang their hit remix “Cold Heart” (the same night the song won an American Music Award for best collaboration).
A cadre of Hollywood stars attended, some walking a pre-concert red carpet, including JoJo Siwa (wearing a “Rocketman” devil suit), Heidi Klum, Angela Bassett, Courtney B. Vance, Kirsten Dunst, John Stamos, Connie Britton and “Top Gun: Maverick” star Miles Teller. Jude Law, Paul McCartney, Mick Jagger and Neil Patrick Harris were in the audience.
Britney Spears, who recently collaborated with John on the single “Hold Me Closer,” did not make an appearance.
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For his encore, John returned to the stage in an outfit that harked back to his classic sparkling (and snug) 1975 Dodgers baseball uniform. The 2022 version was a full silver-shimmering Dodgers robe with the number “1” on the back. Bob Mackie recreated the classic blue baseball cap to finish the throwback look.
John brought his songwriting partner, Bernie Taupin, on stage.
“If it wasn’t for him I would not be standing here,” he said, before calling for his family to join him.
“I want to spend time with my family; I’ll be 76 by the time I stop touring next year,” said John, as his partner, David Furnish, brought out their sons, Zachary, 11, and Elijah, 9. “I want to bring them out here to show you exactly why I’m retiring.”
The superstar, whose career was originally propelled by Los Angeles crowds, thanked the local audience for the pivotal support.
“You made me. Without America, I wouldn’t be here,” he said. “Thank you for all the years of love and generosity. I wish you health and love and prosperity.”
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John ended the show with his classic “Goodbye Yellow Brick Road.” At the song’s end, he discarded his silver robe to reveal a tracksuit and stepped onto a lift that raised him up the stage. An animated John was shown on stage screens walking onto a heavenly Yellow Brick Road.
“Be kind to each other,” John added. “And farewell.”
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[Video] Youtube Elton John says farewell at Dodger Stadium
Elton John wrapped up the U.S. leg of his Farewell Yellow Brick Road tour with a return to the site of one of his most iconic performances, Dodger Stadium. He performed duets with Dua Lipa and Brandi Carlile and broke out many of his biggest hits from a 50-year career. https://abc7.com/elton-john-farewell-tour-dodger-stadium-los-angeles-concert/12477022/